Everywhere you look these days everyone is talking about loving something, or why you should love something. I mean seriously I don’t love my mascara like the girl in the commercial said she does. I like yoga, but i’m not in love with it.
Why is it that we can throw such a powerful word around so carelessly? Even I am guilty of doing it, I use love often when I really mean like. Love and like are not the same thing.
Another powerful question is why are we told to love so many things, but never told to love our own self? Are we as individuals not deserving of our own love?
It seems that people have forgotten how important they are to their world. Oh yes, your world is your’s it belongs only to you. Your world is filled with your perceptions, thoughts, feelings, likes, loves, and well everything that makes you… YOU! There is this big world with everyone in it, but we can’t forget that the life we live is our piece of that world and it makes it our own. Without that we are just meaningless in the Grand view of existence. I don’t want to be meaningless. Do you?
To start with let’s define love:
- In the English language love is a noun and a verb. Meaning it has a few different meanings depending on it’s usage. That already makes it more complicated than most words. Of course it’s complicated though it’s an emotion.
- As a noun love is an intense feeling of deep affection. That leads to the difference in like and love. If you like something it pleases you, if you love it you feel deeply for it. For instance, I have some deep emotions for a good cup of coffee, therefore I love coffee. I however do not love mascara, I could easily live without that stuff…with very plain eyes, but still.
- As a verb love is feeling a deep romantic or sexual attachment to someone. Do you love your other half? Depends, how deep is that feeling? I love and am in love with mine, it’s a feeling so deep it can bring intense pleasure and pain at the same time. That is love, as I said before it’s complicated.
- According to Christianity in a quote from Corinthians 13:4 “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” Things just got a bit more complicated huh?
- The definition of love in Buddhism is: wanting others to be happy.
This love is unconditional and it requires a lot of courage and acceptance (including self-acceptance). Woah! they actually talked about accepting you, which is one of the steps to loving yourself.
- To further expand on the Buddhist point of view, quoting the Dali Lama ” Compassion and love are not mere luxuries. As the source of both inner and external peace, they are fundamental to the continued survival of our species” Translation, we need love!
Alright, I think that gave us enough to ponder on and figure out this love thing once and for all. Now that we know what love is and why we should love, let’s figure out why we should love ourselves.
Oh yes let’s learn why we should love us!
- Self love builds confidence. Think about it, if you don’t love you, you will beat yourself up about any and every flaw you have. Talk about a confidence killer. I used to be really bad for this and still am on occassion. Let me tell you from first hand experience, it made me so self conscious all the time. I was always thinking that people would see in me what I saw in myself.
- Loving yourself builds self care naturally. We all want to take care of those we love right? So naturally if we love ourselves we will take care of us. That leads to healthier habits, eating better, exercise, having some you time, building the life that makes you happy, and making sure to have to have the right people in that life.
- If we love ourselves it’s easier to build spiritual connections. If we aren’t beating our self up all the time it’s easier to be receptive to our surroundings. I don’t mean this as a religious thing, I mean overall spirituality. Our connection to this earth and everyone in it, that profound feeling that you get when you are connected spiritually.
- Ever felt unappreciated? You can fix that by loving and in turn appreciating yourself. You don’t need someone else to validate and be thankful for you. Do it yourself, you might find you’re happier if you do.
- Tired of pleasing everyone else to be left unhappy yourself? Stop it! Just love you, and please yourself in doing so. You don’t have to jump through hoops for people to like you. Do they do it for you? Stop and think long and hard on that. It’s not necessary at all, when you do that you are putting them above you. No one is above anyone else, we are all on the same level.
- Last but not least, ever heard you must love yourself before you truly love someone else? Let me tell you why, when you learn to love and respect yourself you also learn who you are. You become happy just being you and doing your thing. Once you’ve done that you will meet people with mutual interest and goals. This happens on a meta-physical level. Our bodies actually emit hormones that attract others to us. These hormones change depending on our health and mental state. Which means you will automatically connect to people like you because your body is emitting hormones that their body is picking up without any effort by you. So a better you brings better friends and lovers.
There you have it. Several reasons to love you and a lot about what love really is. Like any other emotion love is different for everyone.
We all have our own interpretation of how it feels for us. That’s just part of being human, we get to be individual. Have any thing to add to this, or any tips on learning to love yourself? drop it in the comments below. Don’t be scared like Nike just do it!